Message from the Non-Proliferation and Disarmament Initiative (NPDI)
27 April 2020
The global COVID-19 pandemic has rendered it impossible for the 2020 Review Conference of the Parties to the Treaty on the Non-Proliferation of Nuclear Weapons (NPT) to commence today as originally scheduled. The 12 members of the Non-Proliferation and Disarmament Initiative (NPDI) - Australia, Canada, Chile, Germany, Japan, Mexico, the Netherlands, Nigeria, the Philippines, Poland, Turkey, and the United Arab Emirates - supported the agreement to postpone the important Review Conference given the circumstances.
The NPDI welcomes the efforts of NPT Review Conference President-designate H.E. Ambassador Gustavo Zlauvinen to consult with States Parties on re-scheduling the Conference. The NPDI wishes to indicate its full and continuing support for President-designate Zlauvinen and the Bureau in their endeavours to find new dates for the Review Conference.
While a Review Conference may not be held in 2020, it remains a commemorative year for the NPT, achieving a milestone 50th year since its entry into force. The treaty continues to serve the international community as the cornerstone of the nuclear non-proliferation and disarmament regime. Key successes of the NPT include providing the indispensable framework for nuclear disarmament, greatly limiting the proliferation of nuclear weapons, and guaranteeing the right of States Parties to access nuclear technology for peaceful purposes.
Ten years after its formation, the NPDI looks forward to participating in the NPT Review Conference once re-scheduled. In the interim, we must keep pursuing further progress on nuclear non-proliferation and disarmament where possible.
Consistent with the Ministerial Statement issued on 23 November 2019 in Nagoya, Japan, the NPDI will continue to develop its contributions to the Review Conference, including by promoting greater transparency and strengthening of the NPT Review Process. The NPDI will also promote measures across the NPT’s three pillars to enhance implementation of commitments and legally binding obligations.
The NPDI will continue to make efforts to serve as a bridge-builder. We intend to use the time before the Review Conference to deepen our positive engagement with nuclear-weapon States and non-nuclear-weapon States from all regions and political groups on efforts needed to strengthen the implementation of the NPT. To this end, we remain committed to fostering sustained, high-level political leadership and diplomatic dialogue.
The NPDI remains firmly committed to upholding the contributions made by the NPT over the past 50 years, and to achieving the Treaty’s ultimate objective of a world without nuclear weapons. The NPDI wishes to emphasize that postponing the Review Conference does not make these issues any less urgent. Nuclear non-proliferation and disarmament deserve the continued attention of the international community.